We’ve had quite a harvest of pumpkins and squash this year and they should see us through to spring next year, if they’re able to keep good that long. Such fun veggies to grow and easy too. I rarely watered the plants nor gave them any attention at all past the seedling stage, and they happily brought themselves up and just got on with it, fruiting gloriously all over the patch. If only my children were as easy! And like everything here they’re totally organic. A wonderful veggie to grow for a beginner, albeit you do need quite a bit of space…and dare I say it, sunshine.
They also happen to be one of my favourite veggies to cook with, being so incredibly versatile as they are. Virtually every dinner or snack has some form of squash or pumpkin in these days at Chez Foti, even the cakes and muffins!. My Chocolate Pumpkin Cake is always a big hit with the littlies, both to bake and eat. And the fact that it contains one of your five-a-day is a happy bonus. Jamie’s delightful recipe for Butternut Squash Muffins with a Frosty Top have also proved popular as are my savoury Pumpkin, Cheese & Red Onion Muffins.
Butternut, or flavoursome pumpkin, make a wonderful tart too, especially when combined with a little salty cheese like feta, Butternut, Feta & Red Onion Tart with Thyme. And it’s equally as tasty on a pizza, I’ve made several of The Garden Deli’s Autumn Pizzas now, and this has to be one of my favourite pizza combinations ever now, thanks Sarah!.
Obviously you can make super soups with pumpkins and squash though I’ve yet to experiment with any new recipes this year. Last year I blogged the simple Creamy Roasted Pumpkin Soup then paired it up with a little bacon for my Pumpkin & Bacon Soup and Chorizo for one of my favourite soups ever in my Butternut Squash & Chorizo Soup with Chorizo Croutons. I recently made a fabulous and health inducing Roasted Pumpkin Mulligatawny Soup, thanks to a recipe I chanced upon from Gastrogeek.
This magical duo also go superbly well in a curry, one of my favourite recipes being a veggie curry I blogged last year, Aloo Gobi Kaddu (Potato, Cauliflower and Pumpkin Curry). I also happened upon a wonderful recipe from my beloved Mr HFW for a very tasty Butternut Squash Curry which I’ve now made a couple of times. It’s also a fab veg to add to a stir fry, squidging down and soaking up the flavours, and has been happily added to my Noodles with Pork & Veggies recipe many a time. I also have my eye on trying Shabby Chick’s Noodles with Squash, Chard & Prawns some day soon.
Pumpkin and squash are a fabulous base vegetable for most stews and casseroles, adding a subtle sweetness which my kids particularly favour, one of their favourites being my recently blogged Chicken, Pumpkin & Borlotti Stew and last years Pork, Pepper & Pumpkin Stew. I also add plenty of finely diced pumpkin to my Cottage Pie and Kids Bolognese recipes, loving the way it melts down into the sauce.
And if this isn’t enough cucurbitas in your diet, then you can always happily add them to many a pasta dish too!. Favourites in the Chez Foti household happen to be Pumpkin Mac ‘n Cheese and Pumpkin Carbonara. And then there’s always risottos, my Butternut & Sage Risotto recipe will be coming shortly.
I’ve also been serving up pumpkin or squash as a veggie side dish to a sunday roast. Either chunked and roasted with just a little olive oil, salt and pepper or with a pinch of cumin and coriander too. Pumpkin’s also totally divine roasted with a few bacon lardons and sage.
And don’t forget the glorious seeds and skin. Both squash and pumpkin seeds can be roasted in a frying pan or the oven with just a smear of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Great tossed into a salad or served as a snack with drinks. After watching Nigel Slater recently I’ve started roasting off strips of Butternut skin to make lovely freebie crisps, and also noted Shabby Chick’s Pumpkin Crisps blog.
Other squashy ideas that have grabbed my attention are Fishfingers for Tea’s Butternut Squash Falafel recipe, which no doubt would go very well with the Roasted Pumpkin Hummus that I made last year (and should really get around to blogging!), and Lavender and Lovage’s Roast Pumpkin Salad with Panchetta, Grana Padano & Pumpkin Seeds. And I couldn’t not mention Anneli of Delicioux’s Super, Sexy, Strange: Spaghetti Squash recipes. I can’t wait to get my hands on one!
Well that’s it for this month’s round up, other than to say PLEASE do have a look at the fabulous array of squash and pumpkinie recipes in October’s One Ingredient Challenge and We Should Cocoa. Prepare to be amazed! And my December Veg of the Month is the humble Parsnip, and we’ve got quite a few of those to get through too at Chez Foti. I’d love to hear of your favourite recipes to try out!,
August & September Veg of the Month: The Tomato
July Veg of the Month: The Courgette
June Veg of the Month: Swiss Chard
December 4th, 2012 at 8:38 pm
Wow – what an amazing array of pumpkin & squash recipes! You cannot fail to be inspired by something from that list. Thank you heaps for the mention 🙂 I look forward to discovering what parsnip wonders you can create xx
December 5th, 2012 at 7:44 pm
Thanks Anneli, though I’m not sure I can be quite so creative with a parsnip!
December 4th, 2012 at 8:53 pm
Thanks lots for mentioning my noodles and pumpkin crisps Louisa. Planning to try your chicken, pumpkin and borlotti stew this week. Still have harvest envy when it comes to your pumpkins!
December 5th, 2012 at 7:46 pm
Ha ha, yes we do have a lot. Annoyed at myself for not actually photographing them all before we started to eat them, would have been even more impressive. Next year!
December 4th, 2012 at 10:10 pm
Don’t know how I’ve missed out on pumpkin mac and cheese all this time! Mac & cheese is one of the few things my daughter eats without complaint – I’ll be trying out your pumpkin version later this week. And thanks for the mention of my pizza!
December 5th, 2012 at 7:48 pm
Thanks Sarah, can’t go wrong with a little hidden butternut or pumpkin in Mac ‘n Cheese, and it even adds to the flavour. My son loves it, though Big Sis still will not eat it. She’s strange!
December 4th, 2012 at 10:40 pm
Thanks so much for adding my pumpkin salad, I also add pumpkin to chilli to as an added and secret vegetable! What a lovely round up of tasty recipes, and such great photos too……….Karen
December 5th, 2012 at 7:49 pm
Thank Karen, ahr yes I forgot your lovely chilli recipe. I shall definitely be adding pumpkin to my next chilli!
December 5th, 2012 at 12:25 pm
I would really like to try that Borlotti stew…like right now! What a great round-up of pumpkin recipes! Yes, if only children were as easy to raise as pumpkins. Looks like you are doing a great job on both counts though!
December 5th, 2012 at 7:51 pm
Thank you! Please try the Borlotti Stew, it’s one of my favourites 🙂
December 9th, 2012 at 10:00 pm
Oh wow, thanks for the mention! I love pumpkin and squash for its versititlity and currently have a butternut squash sat on the side waiting to be turned into something or other
January 25th, 2013 at 3:27 pm
Here’s my latest pumpkin recipe – mont d’or pumpkin fondue. on the beach house blog……. hope you enjoy trying it with all your leftovers! lizzi x
January 25th, 2013 at 3:28 pm
thebeachhousefrance.wordpress.com/2013/01/25/mont-dor-pumpkin-fondue/ oops link hopefully now works!
January 26th, 2013 at 12:25 pm
Thanks Lizzi! And what a gorgeous recipe this is, I shall certainly be making with some of our wee little pumpkins we have left :)) A perfect winter warmer supper.
April 29th, 2013 at 9:43 am
[…] enabling me to cook lots of noodles with squash and try more of Louisa at chez foti’s lovely squash recipes. Seeds of Italy have some great salad seeds that would grow quickly while my squash get […]